a veterinarian in a white hazmat suit holding a small pig
The Long Journey to Resolve the Origins of a Previous Pandemic
Dozens of researchers, including myself, worked for years to uncover that swine flu had leapt to humans from a pig in Mexico in 2009. We learned a lot about influenza evolution, pig farming, and outbreak risk along the way.
ABOVE: © ISTOCK.COM, RAT0007
The Long Journey to Resolve the Origins of a Previous Pandemic
The Long Journey to Resolve the Origins of a Previous Pandemic

Dozens of researchers, including myself, worked for years to uncover that swine flu had leapt to humans from a pig in Mexico in 2009. We learned a lot about influenza evolution, pig farming, and outbreak risk along the way.

Dozens of researchers, including myself, worked for years to uncover that swine flu had leapt to humans from a pig in Mexico in 2009. We learned a lot about influenza evolution, pig farming, and outbreak risk along the way.

ABOVE: © ISTOCK.COM, RAT0007
farming
Mice Plague Eastern Australia in Record Numbers
Bianca Nogrady | Jul 12, 2021
A population explosion that began late last year has yet to abate. Meanwhile, researchers are exploring novel approaches to combat the nonnative species.
a tractor moves through a green field
Book Excerpt from Resetting the Table
Robert Paarlberg | Feb 3, 2021
In his book’s introduction, author Robert Paarlberg advocates for the use of modern science in agriculture.
Research Slated for Fall Will Stumble Without Undergraduates
Amanda Heidt | Aug 10, 2020
Junior faculty in particular may lose ground as undergrad students remain barred from university labs.
Genomics Reveals How Humans Can Inadvertently Drive Plant Mimicry
Shawna Williams | Mar 1, 2020
Hand weeding of fields spurred an interloper to evolve a rice-like appearance, researchers conclude.
Climate Change Is Killing East Coast Forests
Ashley Yeager | Mar 1, 2020
As the salty Atlantic Ocean pushes farther inland, forests are turning to marsh. Some scientists want to speed the transition.
coffee plantation
Agriculture and Climate Shape Biodiversity on Mount Kilimanjaro
Michael Graw | Jul 15, 2019
A six-year study across the Tanzanian mountain’s slopes hints at how land-use practices will interact with a changing climate to influence ecosystems around the world.
asfv african swine fever virus vaccine china hog pig farm
Scientists Race to Build Vaccine for African Swine Fever
Katarina Zimmer | Jun 24, 2019
The devastating outbreak of the disease that has led to millions of pig deaths in East Asia has intensified efforts to develop a vaccine quickly, but the virus presents several challenges that are yet to be overcome.
Çatalhöyük excavation poop coprolite whipworm parasite egg neolithic farming
Parasites in Ancient Poo Reflect Neolithic Settlers’ Lifestyle
Ashley P. Taylor | Jun 21, 2019
From an excavation of a site called Çatalhöyük, in modern-day Turkey, scientists recover preserved whipworm eggs—a sign of settling down and living in close quarters.
a barley field under a blue sky
Climate Change Likely to Ding Beer Supply
Shawna Williams | Oct 15, 2018
The average price of a pint could double by the end of this century because of declines in barley yields, a study predicts.
Microbiome Differences Between Farmers and City-Dwellers Start Early
Shawna Williams | Jun 5, 2018
Compared with their urban counterparts, babies and toddlers in rural Nigeria have gut microbiota that more closely resembles that of adults in their community.
Organic Fertilizers Rife With Microplastics: Study
Shawna Williams | Apr 4, 2018
Converting biowaste to plant food is an overlooked source of tiny plastic pollutants, researchers say.
Long-term Study Finds That the Pesticide Glyphosate Does Not Cause Cancer
Katarina Zimmer | Nov 9, 2017
The report provides evidence that goes against concerns that Monsanto’s popular herbicide, Roundup, is carcinogenic. 
Washington State University Researchers Complain of Industry Influence
Kerry Grens | Nov 6, 2017
Agriculture faculty members allege funding from industry organizations is tied to their employment status.
New Antibiotic Resistance Genes Found in Soil Microbes
Ashley Yeager | Jun 19, 2017
The discovery of peptides, enzymes, and other gene products that confer antibiotic resistance could give clues to how it develops.
Study: Farming Arose Twice in the Ancient Middle East
Bob Grant | Jun 21, 2016
Ancient DNA research suggests that there were two independent agricultural revolutions more than 10,000 years ago.
Unexpectedly Wild
Karen Zusi | Sep 1, 2015
Genomic analysis reveals pigs interbred with wild boars during domestication.
Bees Drawn to Pesticides
Kerry Grens | Apr 24, 2015
One study shows the insects prefer food laced with pesticides, while another adds to the evidence that the chemicals are harmful to some pollinators.
Taming Bushmeat
Jyoti Madhusoodanan | Jan 1, 2015
Chinese farmers’ efforts at rearing wild animals may benefit conservation and reduce human health risks.
Ancient Europeans Were Lactose Intolerant
Bob Grant | Oct 21, 2014
Five-thousand years after agricultural practices spread across Neolithic Europe, human populations remained unable to digest sugars from the milk of mammals.